Towards an accurate AS-level traceroute tool
Proceedings of the 2003 conference on Applications, technologies, architectures, and protocols for computer communications - SIGCOMM '03
Traceroute is widely used to detect routing problems, characterize end-to-end paths, and discover the Internet topology. Providing an accurate list of the Autonomous Systems (ASes) along the forwarding path would make traceroute even more valuable to researchers and network operators. However, conventional approaches to mapping traceroute hops to AS numbers are not accurate enough. Address registries are often incomplete and out-of-date. BGP routing tables provide a better IP-to-AS mapping,
... gh this approach has significant limitations as well. Based on our extensive measurements, about 10% of the traceroute paths have one or more hops that do not map to a unique AS number, and around 15% of the traceroute AS paths have an AS loop. In addition, some traceroute AS paths have extra or missing AS hops due to Internet eXchange Points, sibling ASes managed by the same institution, and ASes that do not advertise routes to their infrastructure. Using the BGP tables as a starting point, we propose techniques for improving the IP-to-AS mapping as an important step toward an AS-level traceroute tool. Our algorithms draw on analysis of traceroute probes, reverse DNS lookups, BGP routing tables, and BGP update messages collected from multiple locations. We also discuss how the improved IP-to-AS mapping allows us to home in on cases where the BGP and traceroute AS paths differ for legitimate reasons.